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PrincessKitty

How To Handle A Dinner Out With Friends

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My husband was recently diagnosed with celiac and DH. Over the holidays with our families, he got glutened twice. Our families meant well and thought they had made gluten-free items but I think there was issues with cc. He is just recovering from his last attack and we got invited out to dinner with friends for NYE. There were three restaurant options, one of which has gluten-free items the other two are local spots. The choice really depends on who's still accepting reservations! I really don't want him to have another episode, especially so close to the last two. Besides the digestion issues, his skin breaks out, his depression worsens and he's just a bear to deal with. :( I'd rather avoid that if I can!

So what would be your suggestions? Should we eat at home first and stick to a salad (and bring our dressing!)? We are going back to their house afterward and I'm planning on making two gluten-free dips. Just wasn't sure if we should skip dinner altogether.

I'm planning on ordering those gluten cards from Triumph but they obviously aren't going to get here by tomorrow.

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If you decide to go out, call to see who have reservations open, start with the gluten free menu place first. Be Sure to tell the place you have someone gluten free dining with you when you call (and again when you are being seated). They need to know ahead of time about this fact especially on a busy night. Do this anytime you go out, do not expect a place to prepare something gluten free without a heads up before hand.

The problem with eating out is the cross contamination and that some people really do not understand fully the gluten free diet. It's a risk anytime you eat out.

Rather late notice, but why not have dinner at your place. Prepare something special and easy but nice. I do steaks and lobsters for NYE along with a salad of mixed greens, walnuts, apples and maytag blue cheese. Then head to the friends house for the evening.

You can print some cards here for free or a donation(in several languages):

http://www.celiactravel.com/restaurant-cards.html

Also free cards here:

http://www.glutenfreeeasy.com/facts/living/cards.asp

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Thank you so much for the suggestion. I will definitely call ahead and see what I can find out. I didn't organize the dinner (and there are other people attending that I don't really know) or I would offer to host at my house instead. I appreciate the cards though! Very helpful!!

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I have had a successful night out with friends to a place I didn't choose by doing two things.

First, I studied the menu ahead of time. Lots of places post their menus online these days - as was the case for the place we went to. But if you can't find it on line - and the place is not too far away - it might be worth it to go there today or tomorrow and get a copy!

My approach was to look for entrees that by their nature should be gluten free. (In my case, I chose a salmon entree and a salad.) Then I called the restaurant and explained my need, and asked if all the ingredients used for the entree (it had a delicious glaze) were gluten free. The person I spoke to was very gracious and reviewed my selections with the chef. I had chosen well; all ingredients to be used were gluten free.

I let him know the date and time of our reservation, and he encouraged me to not hesitate to ask further questions or make addtional requests. They had a member of the wait staff who was knowledgeable about the needs of a gluten-free diet.

I know this approach didn't eliminate the possibility of cross contamination. But by scoping things out and making my selection ahead of time, I removed a lot of anxiety and was able to enjoy my evening - and my dinner - with no ill effects afterwards.

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